Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Green choices - what we eat

[part 2 in a series - continued from yesterday]

Buying fruits and vegetables produced within a few hundred miles of your home consumes a lot less oil and generates a lot less pollution than produce from across the country or across the ocean. Given the limited selection in colder climates, opting for U.S. grown winter produce from across the country is a greener choice than produce from overseas. In the warmer months, we have farmers’ markets.

CSAs (community supported agriculture) are another option for local produce. This link gives information on how CSAs work and has additional links to find CSAs near you. CSAs work by subscription. For example, person A gets a subscription to Joe’s Farm for 20 weeks of crops. During the growing season, Joe’s Farm makes regular deliveries to a city or suburban location where A and other subscribers can pick up their box of produce for the week. Selection and quantity varies depending on what is ready for picking that week. Subscribers are effectively shareholders in the farm, providing capital for the farm’s operating costs and sharing its risks. They get an opportunity to reconnect with the natural cycle of growth and to share in the bounty if the year’s crop yield is exceptionally good. The farmer gains financial security, gets a better price for crops, and can spend more time and energy on farming that might otherwise be diverted by marketing efforts.

Another installment tomorrow...

2 comments:

Thomas Westgard said...

There are a lot of local Chicago-area food resources at Family Farmed. Their 2007 Expo is March 23 & 24, 2007 at the Chicago Cultural Center, 78 E. Washington St. (the old Public Library).

And, of course, right here in Rogers Park we have the New Leaf Grocery, in some fashion an offshoot of the former Greenleaf Grocery. Anyway, they have subscription boxes of fruit&veg, just fruit, or just veg, in varying sizes to meet the needs of differently-sized households. Starting at $15, pickup or delivery.

RPCommentator said...

Tom;

Thanks for the tip about New Leaf Grocery. Didn’t know they were there. Look like this may be a good alternative to the "little box" eco friendly groceries.